Established in 2013, External Development Summit (XDS) is the only annual, international games industry event with a primary focus on external development for art, animation, audio, software engineering, QA and localization.

XDS gathers hundreds of international attendees from over 45 countries to advance the practice of external development for the games industry with three days of structured networking in Vancouver, Canada, one of the most beautiful cities in the world. XDS is considered to be a professionals-only event.

From the first keynote to the final remarks, XDS focuses on four core values:

  • Knowledge Sharing
  • B2B Networking
  • Collaboration
  • Industry Stewardship

In the interest of health and safety for all, and to be inclusive of our international audience, we will be delivering a virtual 2021 experience that won’t disappoint!

Who attends XDS?

As a professionals-only event, XDS attendees include a concentrated group of game developers, service providers, and middleware providers from over 45 countries. Individuals in attendance are the influencers and decision makers for external development for their respective organizations. XDS aims to maintain a balanced ratio of 50/50 buyers to sellers.


Companies that exclusively develop their own IP, and/or publish games. These companies are clients to Service Providers.

NOTE: Does not include Service Providers that develop their own IP.

Service Providers

A 3rd party company that provides work-for-hire or full SKU development services for clients.

NOTE: It is possible these companies also develop their own IP, however they are still considered to be in the Service Provider category.

Middleware Providers

A 3rd party company that provides tools and technologies that support the practice of external development.

Could include tools for remote review, communication, project management, file transfer, etc.

XDS will consider attendance from others, including those from the media, film, TV and animation. Email for more information.

XDS Lifetime Achievements


Growth in Attendance


Contacts & Followers


Donated to Charitable Initiatives


Tickets Sold Out


B2B Meetings

Latest Blogs &
News Event

External Development Summit Supports The Foundation of PlayOct
XDS Gives Back

External Development Summit Supports The Foundation of Play

The 9th annual External Development Summit (XDS21 Adapt) achieved new milestones in its second year of going f...

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The Foundation of Play: XDS Partners with <br> The Power Of PlayJul
News | XDS Gives Back

The Foundation of Play: XDS Partners with
The Power Of Play

As external development continues to advance year after year, XDS Gives Back returns to our roots by supportin...

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XDS Webinar Series

As we strive to continuously advance external development for the games industry, we look for new and interesting ways to share expert knowledge. XDS Webinar Series offers presentations from games industry professionals sharing invaluable insights from either a Developer/Publisher or Service Provider perspective.